Monday, 7 September 2009

Switzerland agrees to exchange tax data

A Protocol delivering comprehensive exchange of information up to OECD and international tax standards between Switzerland and the UK, which covers UK taxes of all kinds, was signed in London today by The Financial Secretary to the Treasury, the Right Honourable Stephen Timms MP and the Swiss Ambassador to the UK, His Excellency Alexis P Lautenberg.

Stephen Timms said:

“I very much welcome the Swiss Federal Council’s agreement on international co-operation in tax matters and their adoption of the OECD standard on administrative assistance.

“The days when hiding money off-shore represented a viable means of evading UK tax are rapidly drawing to a close.”

Dave Hartnett, HMRC’s Permanent Secretary for Tax, added:

“Transparency and information exchange are the foundation on which fair and effective tax systems are built. I am delighted that there is growing global recognition of the inevitability of properly regulated information exchange as the key to proper tax visibility.”

The text of the agreement can be accessed on the HMRC website by following the link below:

and will in due course be laid as Schedules to a draft Order in Council for consideration by the House of Commons. It will then also be available from the Stationery Office. The Protocol will come into force as soon as each government has completed the necessary procedures to give effect to it under its domestic laws.

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